A Man and His Dog Emerge as ‘AGT’ Champs

America's Got Talent on NBC
The ‘America’s Got Talent’ judges with winners Adrian Stoica and Hurricane. (Image credit: NBC)

An animal act has won season 18 of America’s Got Talent, as Adrian Stoica and his dog Hurricane were the top vote getters. They won $1 million and join the America’s Got Talent Presents Superstars Live stage show at Luxor Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. 

The first audition for Stoica and Hurricane got a standing ovation from the judges. 

After their performance in the season finale September 27, judge Simon Cowell said, “What we saw is incredible … (Hurricane) is a star.”

Stoica comes from Italy and is a dog trainer. He holds a half dozen Disc Dog World Championship titles. He made it to the Italia’s Got Talent semifinals in 2017 and was on Romania’s Got Talent in 2018 and 2022. 

Stoica and Hurricane are not the first dog act to win AGT, with the Olate Dogs winning season seven. 

The season 18 finale went down at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in southern California. The finale featured the top 11 finalists performing alongside guests, including chef and TV star Cat Cora, songwriter Diane Warren and singer Jason Derulo.

Cowell, Howie Mandel, Sofia Vergara and Heidi Klum are the judges on AGT and Terry Crews is the host.  

NBC held the season finale back a couple weeks to bolster its fall schedule, with new shows hard to come by amidst the writers’ and actors’ strikes. 

Dance group the Mayyas won season 17.  

Season 19 is on NBC next summer and AGT: Fantasy League debuts next year. 

Simon Cowell created America’s Got Talent, which is co-produced by Fremantle and Syco Entertainment. He executive produces with Sam Donnelly and Jason Raff. 

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.